Steve Vassallo is a General Partner @ Foundation Capital where he sits or has sat on the boards of Pocket (acquired by Mozilla), PrivateCore (acquired by Facebook), Sunrun [RUN], Sentient Energy and many more. Prior to Foundation, Steve was Senior Vice President of Product and Engineering @ Ning, the social platform he helped launch in 2004. Before that, Steve was a project leader at IDEO, where he developed more than a dozen successful products for companies including Cisco, Nike, BMW and McDonalds. In addition, this year, Steve published The Way to Design, a guidebook for becoming a designer founder and building a design-centric company.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:
1.) How Steve made his way into the world of VC with Foundation from the land of product management?
2.) Why does Steve believe we have seen design move from a styling exercise to the main stage and a foundation of product? How does Steve feel the current crop of VC’s analyse and appreciate design? What are they getting wrong? What can be done to engender a new sense of appreciation for good design?
3.) What advice would Steve give to a young person entering the workforce considering founding a startup, joining one or joining an incumbent? Where do they make their biggest mistakes? What is the optimal choice for learning and personal growth?
4.) Why does Steve have a problem with the term “product-market fit”? Where do people misunderstand about PMF? What is one looking to achieve with product market fit? How does Joe Gebbia @ Airbnb best present this idea?
5.)Steve has worked with dozens of 1st time founders over the last decade, what are the commonalities in the mistakes they make? What advice does Steve hear most commonly given that he disagrees with?
Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:
Steve’s Fave Book: Poor Charlie’s Almanack
Steve’s Most Recent Investment: forusall
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